Everyone in the street has 1.8 m fence but my neighbour wants to put a 1.2 m fence up. This will affect my privacy. What should I do? – Charles, NSW

First, you may wish to find out where the fence is being built. If the fence is between two private properties, the dividing fences law would apply. If it is between private and common property, then the strata property by-laws apply.

Depending on what side of the property the fence is being built and what kind of materials are being used, you neighbour may reserve the right to build a fence of either 1.2 or 1.8 meters. Side fences may not be higher than 1.8 meters or 1.2 meters if it is built from masonry. You may find more details on the Fair Trading website.

If your property by-laws specify certain requirements, you may wish to check how that may affect the matter.

Often, an open communication can solve matters between neighbours. You may talk to your neighbour and share your concerns about privacy.

If you cannot come to an agreement with your neighbour and if they’re not following the law, you can apply for a fencing order which is a court or tribunal order about what fencing work should be done, whose responsibility is it to carry out the work and how the costs should be shared.

You may read this article to know more about sharing boundaries and responsibilities to enhance strata community living.